Five Things to Know about the Latest USCIS Announcement

USCIS and DACA Renewal Applications

THE TORCH: CONTENTSBy Ignacia Rodriguez, NILC, and Sanaa Abrar and Greisa Martinez, United We Dream

Last updated JANUARY 29, 2018 | Versión en español

U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) has announced that it would resume accepting DACA (Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals) renewal applications beginning January 13, 2018. This policy change is in response to the January 9 injunction by a U.S. district court in San Francisco requiring the federal government to resume accepting DACA renewal applications. This policy reversal is the result of several lawsuits challenging the Trump administration’s September 5, 2017, decision to terminate the wildly successful DACA program.

This is another victory on the path to winning a permanent solution for immigrant youth, which is the Dream Act, optimally by February 8. We will be providing updates as more information becomes available, but here are the top five things we think you should know:

1. USCIS is now accepting certain DACA renewal applications. If your DACA expired on or after September 5, 2016, you may send USCIS a DACA renewal application. This means you must fill out the latest versions of Form I-821D, Consideration of Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals; Form I-765, Application for Employment Authorization; and Form I-765WS Worksheet. If your DACA expired before September 5, 2016, you must reapply by filing your application as a first-time one rather than as a renewal. All applicants, whether filing as first-timers or as renewing, must include the date their DACA expired or will expire on Part 1 of the Form I-821D.

2. USCIS will not accept new DACA applications from people who haven’t applied previously. No actually first-time DACA applications will be accepted by USCIS. If you are eligible for DACA now but have not applied for it in the past, this announcement does not apply to you.

3. Requests for advance parole from DACA recipients will not be accepted. USCIS will not accept or approve any advance parole requests from DACA recipients.

4. We do not know how long USCIS will continue to accept DACA renewal applications. The Trump administration stated that it plans to “vigorously” challenge the district court’s decision. This means that the window of time available for submitting your DACA renewal application is uncertain. If you fulfill the requirements mentioned above, you should assess whether to apply immediately.

5. Our fight to get the Dream Act passed by February 8 continues! This is a testament to the work that undocumented youth have led to fight back against Trump’s decision to end DACA, which was announced on Sept. 5, 2017. However, we can’t keep living our lives in monthly — or daily — limbo. Our goal is clear: win the Dream Act by February 8. Not all of us are protected by DACA, so our community remains at risk of detention and deportation until we win a permanent legislative solution. Text DreamActNow to 877877 to learn how you can join us in pressuring Congress to stand on the right side of history and pass the Dream Act by February 8!